Today an off-the-shelf computer comes with the some basic programs and executable options. However if these computers do not include an operating system, then you will probably not get the basic programs either. But when the computer comes with an operating system, along with the Windows you get an array of free programs. These programs help you perform some basic actions on your computer. Let's look at the different programs available with the preloaded operating system that comes with most newly bought computers.
Notepad/Wordpad: Notepad is the basic tool to write something and save it on your computer. This will not have much formatting options but will help you store drafts of letter, legal documents, lists, etc. Wordpad on the other hand will give you rich text formatting options with color, font face, and options to embed videos, images, etc. It however lacks MS Word's high-end options like word check, etc.
Calculator: The basic calculator that comes with the operating system helps the user in executing simple mathematical functions like addition, subtraction, division, multiplication and calculating percentages.
Media Player: The windows media player is pretty sufficient to listen to music and watch videos. The media player however supports only certain audio and video formats. With an external set of speakers, media player can be a good makeshift audio system for the impromptu get-togethers! You can use the media player to listen to internet radio as well. The media player graphic animation when the music plays is particularly enticing.
Paint: The Paint tool will help you in creating pictures, basic image editing and viewing images. However the edit functions are extremely limited and can never be used for serious photo editing purposes.
System Tools: Along with the above, the operating systems also come with some system tools, back-up options, disc repair, disc fragmentation options and disc division, etc. You also get Internet Explorer with most of the operating systems.
Games: Windows will also give you some gaming options from solitaire to freecell, hearts and minesweeper. All these are good for passing time in between your work! These days Windows also provide options to play Internet Solitaire, Blackgammon, etc.
WinZip: Winzip used to unzip files or to compress a number of files in to one file also comes with most windows installations.
Although the above mentioned tools are helpful when you are just starting off with your first computer, but eventually you will need more programs and options to fulfill your requirements. Slowly starting from the requirement of a spreadsheet to a database to maintain your expenses to editing tools to edit your photographs and videos, your needs will increase one by one. You may need to convert your document into a PDF or launch it in HTML. You may need to design animations or may need to create blueprints. You will then need a Macromedia Flash or AutoCAD to fulfill your needs. The pre-installed programs will always stay helpful but the truth is you will need to add more programs and software.
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